Hello, guys and girls! Welcome back to the Community Interview. This week, we'll be talking to another member of our gaming community - a great gamer and all-around nice guy, Mo the SurferB1ue: Hi, Mo! Let's get right to it. Gamertags almost always tell something about their owners. Tell us about yours.
: Hi, B1ue! When I was in the US Navy, I did a LOT of surfing and my nickname was Moses, which got shortened to Mo. Droopy (the same guy who started calling me Moses) intro'd me as Mo the Surfer, and it stuck.B1ue: A military man! Before we proceed any further, I want to thank you very much for serving our country. I'm grateful.
How long have you been gaming?
: I started with pinball machines, but then Pong
hit the market. The Atari 2600 came out when I was in 10th grade. B1ue: Was Pong the first game you played? What’s your fondest memory of it?
: Yes, it was. I couldn't get over how cool it was that I could turn a dial and something happened on the TV screen. You have to remember that it was the mid 70's. Before that it was a board game or pinball. B1ue: I remember those days. I played a lot of Pong myself. Do others in your family game, or are you a first-generation gamer?
: I was the only one that really played video games back then; my sisters didn't like it very much. Now, I am married to a gamer (her GS is around 35K), and my kids all game, too. B1ue: What do your parents/significant other/friends have to say about your gaming?
: My mom thinks that I am nuts, but she can't complain – I don't live with her. My wife likes it because it's easy to keep tabs on me. My kids think it's cool that their dad is a gamer. My friends don't get it – do yours?? B1ue: No, mine don’t either; they think it’s kid stuff. I think that’s part of the appeal of TA. We don’t have to explain ourselves for liking games.
What part of the world do you live in? If I were to visit, what sights would I have to see?
: I live in California, which to the world means beaches and movie stars. Where I live in Northern California, there isn't any of that at all. There is some really cool history here, though. The gold rush started about an hour north of the town I live in. B1ue: I was in Northern California a few months ago for a conference. It’s so beautiful there. I loved it! I even managed not to get run over during rush hour. ;P
Assuming you’re not a professional gamer, what’s your day job?
: Art Student. I used to own a house painting business, but the economy slowed way down and my business went over a cliff. 60K per year to 19K in the span of two years. Yeah, that's a cliff. So I closed my business and went back to school. B1ue: Ouch. That’s really rough. How’s school going? Is it what you expected? Which direction do you hope to go when you graduate?
: School is going very well. Everything that I am learning I could have learned outside of the college class room, but I probably would not have bothered. Since there's a letter grade involved in the equation, I make sure I have the information. That doesn't really apply on the Art side though. I had an instructor last semester who really made me step up and earn my A in her class. Sure I could draw, but she pushed me. I hated it at first, but I thanked her at the end of the semester. My aim is to grab my AA and a few certificates along the way. I am working toward animation and game design, but I really doubt that I will stick around for a BA. That would involve me moving to San Jose (no thank you, too crowded) or LA. I hate LA.B1ue: As a college instructor myself, I’m so happy that school is going well for you. Here’s hoping that you have great success!
What other hobbies do you enjoy?
: Gaming is my main hobby, but I also enjoy reading, which is probably why I focus on the storyline in a new game that I am playing. B1ue: Tell us about your home life – parents, spouse, children, significant other, animal companions?
: My wife is a programmer specializing in database creation and management, so I am a full time dad and part time student. We decided a long time ago to home school our kids, so I am also a teacher. Pets? No, we don't have any pets. I have three boys – I have all of the animals that I need right now!!B1ue: Home schooling? Wow, I admire that. I considered it when my kids were younger, but I know myself well enough to know that I'm not disciplined enough. That takes such a huge commitment. Good for you. And you have some seriously cute boys, by the way. :)
What’s your favorite game of all time on any console? What makes it special?
: That's a difficult question. I guess it would be The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion
. I was really just kicking at gaming for a while to find a new hobby besides drinking every night. Oblivion
came along and offered me an immersive experience that I couldn't stop playing. To give an example, I was drinking a 12 pack every night for about three years before Oblivion came along. That game allowed me to get away from a REALLY bad habit. Don't get me wrong, I can have a beer or two every once in a while, but not like before Oblivion
. B1ue: Wow, that’s wonderful. I’m glad you were able to leave that habit behind. I love Oblivion, too.
If some evil spell allowed you to own only a single game for the rest of your life, what would it be?
: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
– but I would want it for the PC. Why? Have you seen the MODS for that game??B1ue: No, I haven’t. Could you give some examples?
: Sure, love to! There are all kinds of mods, everything from weather extremes, thunder and lightning, white out blizzard conditions, hail, and even tornadoes. There are new and better horses to ride (flaming horse FTW!!). You can have your pick of houses in just about any city, but I want the houseboat that floats in the air. It's called "The Asteria." There are even people that have added entire countries to the game. Elsweyr sounds like a cool place to hang out. And then there's that female fully nude mod (HAR HAR HAR!!!). If I install that one, my wife will kill me!!B1ue: Wow! I had no idea! I now understand a Youtube video I saw once that showed someone beheading Maven Black-Briar with Jedi light sabers… I may have to try that!
Are there any games that you regret putting on your gamertag?
: Only three of them, actually. If Microsoft ever started a program to allow me to erase a game from my gamertag (for a fee, of course), I would gladly pay it. (HINT! HINT!) Sonic Unleashed
– this is a recent bean dive addition.Tenchu Z
– I just don't like this game at all.Grand Theft Auto IV
– this is the first and last Rockstar game I am ever going to play.B1ue: If you were forced to change your gamertag, what would you change it to? What does the new tag reflect about you?
: 'Remade Mo' because I have re-invented myself so many times already, and I will re-invent myself again before too long. B1ue: Do you have any particular gaming pet peeves?
: When I am playing co-op and another of my party decides that he wants to chew food or slurp from a can or he decides that it's ok the burp into his mic. Yeah, that really bothers me. B1ue: What upcoming game are you most looking forward to?
: Fallout 4
or the new Elder Scrolls
(not the MMO)B1ue: What game are you most proud of completing? Why?
: Gears of War 2
. The last achievement I needed for that game was Annex. I really don't like MP achievements, so I joined a session to get it done. The boosting session ran for about 14 hours. I got my achievement early on, but I stuck it out to help everyone else get theirs, too. B1ue: Fourteen hours?! Now that's some dedicated boosting!
If you found yourself dropped into a video game, which video game character would you most want to have your back?
: Liara T'soni from the Mass Effect
series. B1ue: Why Liara?
: Which guy out there wouldn't want a girl friend with blue skin and the ability to manipulate objects from across the room then rip the bad guys apart with her mind?? My wife already told me that she won't paint herself blue - I asked.B1ue: Well, they do make edible body paint now, you know. She, um, might like it more than she thinks…ahem. Yes, well, moving on.
In the same scenario, what character/creature would you most/least like to see headed your way?
: An angry Krogan BattlemasterB1ue: Oh, my…that one needs no further elaboration.
Any characters you would like to see thrown into video game hell?
: The Illusive Man, but I am sure that he's there already.B1ue: Do you prefer single player or multi-player?
: Single player – much more immersiveB1ue: Have you ever had any bad experiences online?
: In a Halo 3
match, a guy decided that it would be ok to threaten my wife and kids because he lost. That was where I lost my taste for multi-player games. B1ue: Man, that’s over the top. What did you do?
: First, I sent Bungie a copy of the PM, and I sent the same message to Xbox LIVE. Then I took it a step further and sent the same information to the FBI. No, I am not kidding. I take the security of my family very seriously. If the guy had threatened only me, I would have blown it off as an anger management issue. Once he crossed the line of bringing harm to my wife and kids, he was fair game for the justice system. I heard from Bungie and LIVE (separately) that the gamer in question had been dealt with though they never explained in what way. I also got an email from the FBI telling me that an investigation had been opened in the case, but that was the last I heard of it.B1ue: That’s unbelievable. I’m sorry you ran into such a complete ass. I can see why single player is so much more appealing to you. I hope they dealt with him severely.
Multi-player can be a blast, however, with the right friends. If you could have a multi-player session with anyone in the world, whom would you choose? Why?
: Halo 4
co-op campaign with my kids all on different consoles. They are all old enough now that they can hold their own in just about any game. We just need three more copies of the game, two more consoles, and two HD TV's to make it happen.B1ue: That really would be a blast! Sounds doable to me!
Have you ever had a game you really looked forward to that you were disappointed in when it finally arrived? Tell us about it.
: Mass Effect 3
(big surprise). The ending just killed the series. Totally lame. B1ue: Tell us about your set-up.
: The first picture - with the guitar - is my storage area. I had taken most of it apart so we could play Kinect, which is pic #2. We have to totally re-arrange our living room and clear most of the furniture out of the way to get Kinect to read properly.
********************Favorite 360 game?Skyrim
.Favorite non-360 game?Final Fantasy
.Least favorite game?Too Human
.Favorite game developer?
Bethesda. Favorite game weapon?
Bow.Most hated game enemy?
Lambent Berserker – what a bitch.Favorite game character?
Master Chief – is he ever gonna get a day off? Favorite game ending?
The first BioShock (Xbox 360)
ending.Most hated game ending?Mass Effect 3
– before and after the update.Favorite game music?
None. I learned a long time ago – the hard way – that when bullets fly, there isn't any cool music in the background.
*End of Lightning Round
*************************B1ue: Is there anything else you’d like to add? Any shout-outs you want to make before we go?
: A shout-out to the podcasters – great job, you guys!! It would be really great if the podcast were more than once a month!!
And that's it, ladies and gents. Join me for one more giant THANK YOU to Mo the Surfer for taking the time to share his time and part of his life with us. Join me back here in a couple of weeks for our next guest, Marc Pilkington
. Come and see me, and...let's talk.
Think you're a good candidate for the Community Interview or know someone who is? Send me a PM and let me know why you believe that. Convince me. Please keep in mind that I've been inundated with requests. I tell you this not to discourage you from writing me but to explain why you might not hear back from me for a while. See you later! B1ueSeptember